United Methodist-related Young Harris College recently contributed 83 shoe boxes filled with Christmas presents and a check for $245 to Operation Christmas Child, an international outreach project facilitated by Samaritan’s Purse. Samaritan's Purse is a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization that aims to provide worldwide spiritual and physical aid.
“Operation Christmas Child provides a perfect opportunity for the College’s students, faculty and staff to offer a tangible gift of love to a child they will likely never know,” said YHC Campus Minister and Assistant Professor of Religious Studies Rev. Dr. Tim Moore. “Such giving is our own incarnation of love, packaged in a shoebox bursting at the seams with love. In this simple way, we are able to connect our faith to how we live and make that faith real in a new way for us and for those who receive these little gifts.”
Young Harris College’s involvement in Operation Christmas Child began in 1999. Each year, faculty, staff and students are encouraged to make individual contributions or participate in group service projects within organizations or teams. The shoe boxes were presented during a special service in Susan B. Harris Chapel on the YHC campus.
According to YHC Baseball Head Coach Rick Robinson, participating in Operation Christmas Child is an annual tradition for the YHC baseball team. This year, 38 of the team’s players prepared shoe boxes and utilized an EZ Give barcode on the label that will allow the team to receive e-mails revealing the destination of some of their gifts.
“I really enjoy putting together the shoe boxes each year because it allows us to step back and see the importance in the things we fill the boxes with that will benefit children in need,” said YHC baseball player Taylor Topping, a junior biology major from Virginia Beach, Va. “It also brings us together as a team, and it’s a perfect time for us to give back to the global community during the holidays.”
For more information about Samaritan’s Purse and Operation Christmas Child, visit www.samaritanspurse.org.